22h 2min, jan 13, 2018 y - Trump issues ultimatum to 'fix' Iran nuclear deal
Trump said he would waive sanctions against Iran that were lifted as part of the international deal for the last time unless his conditions were met.
The ultimatum puts pressure on Europeans - key backers and parties to the 2015 international agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program – to satisfy Trump, who wants the pact strengthened with a separate agreement within 120 days.
“Despite my strong inclination, I have not yet withdrawn the United States from the Iran nuclear deal,” Trump said in a statement. “Instead, I have outlined two possible paths forward: either fix the deal’s disastrous flaws, or the United States will withdraw.”
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif responded on Twitter that the deal was not renegotiable and that Trump’s stance “amounts to desperate attempts to undermine a solid multilateral agreement.”
Trump, who has sharply criticized the deal reached during Democrat Barack Obama’s presidency, had privately chafed at having to once again waive sanctions on a country he sees as a rising threat in the Middle East.
“This is a last chance,” Trump said, pushing for a separate agreement. “In the absence of such an agreement, the United States will not again waive sanctions in order to stay in the Iran nuclear deal. And if at any time I judge that such an agreement is not within reach, I will withdraw from the deal immediately.”
Trump laid out several conditions to keep the United States in the deal. Iran must allow “immediate inspections at all sites requested by international inspectors,” he said, and “sunset” provisions imposing limits on Iran’s nuclear program must not expire. Trump said U.S. law must tie long-range missile and nuclear weapons programs together, making any missile testing by Iran subject to “severe sanctions.”
The president wants Congress to modify a law that reviews U.S. participation in the nuclear deal to include “trigger points” that, if violated, would lead to the United States reimposing its sanctions, the official said.
This would not entail negotiations with Iran, the official said, but rather would be the result of talks between the United States and its European allies. Work already has begun on this front, the official said.
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